Title:
Exercise device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
Exercise devices permitting a person or persons to exercise using one or more extendable bands. The exercise device may comprise a frame with a cavity and at least one extendable band which is at least temporarily attachable to the frame at one end and wherein a handle may be attached to the extendable band at the other end. In some embodiments, the frame may be incorporated into, or attached to, cabinet, dresser, desk, armoire, or other piece of furniture.



Inventors:
Greene, Marcus Allen (Columbus, GA, US)
Application Number:
11/893127
Publication Date:
03/20/2008
Filing Date:
08/14/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B21/055
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20030211920Light weight and portable exercise device with bench seatNovember, 2003Mandel
20020142900Handle of exercise deviceOctober, 2002Wang
20090100706HEEL SHOE FOR SQUATTING EXERCISESApril, 2009Pierre
20080161166Exercise Machine With Adjustable PedalsJuly, 2008Lo
20050107229Partially stabilized exercise deviceMay, 2005Wickens
20040110612Translational type exercise machine with horizontal free planar motionJune, 2004Read
20090258763WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE TREADMILLOctober, 2009Richter
20060046901Linking mechanism for exerciserMarch, 2006Pan et al.
20070093365Path adjustable exercise armsApril, 2007Batca
20090023565VIBRA BACK WAVEJanuary, 2009Liang
20100093501Walking Stilts with Separate Heel and Toe SectionsApril, 2010Singleton



Primary Examiner:
BIDDER, ALLANA LEWIN
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
MICHAEL J. BOOTCHECK, LLC (MCDONOUGH, GA, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An exercise device, said device comprising: a frame having: a first front vertical member, a second front vertical member, a first front horizontal member, a second front horizontal member, a first rear vertical member, a second rear vertical member, a first rear horizontal member, a second rear horizontal member, a first spacer, a second spacer, a third spacer, and a fourth spacer at least one elastic band extendably connected to said frame at one end and said at least one elastic band having a handle at a second end.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein said at least one elastic band includes four elastic bands.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application claims priority from U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 60/837,539, filed Aug. 14, 2006, which is titled “Road Buddy”, and which is hereby incorporated by reference and U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 60/936,212, filed Jun. 19, 2007, which is titled “Hideaway Fitness Buddy”, and which is hereby incorporated by reference.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates to exercise equipment and particularly to exercise devices which can be used by an individual desiring to work out. The exercise device relates more specifically to an exercise device which can be mounted on a wall or floor having one or more extendable bands.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

Anyone looking to purchase exercise equipment will quickly find that exercise equipment and apparatus consume a lot of space. Conventional exercise equipment may include a set of weights, weight bench, resistance band machine, treadmill, step-master and stationary bicycle. Such equipment can easily occupy fifty or more square feet for even the most basic set of equipment. Unfortunately, many situations do not allow for an individual to designate such a large amount of floor space to such equipment.

Various types of exercise devices have been designed and constructed to assist individuals in fitness programs. These range from relatively complex, heavy and expensive devices such as universal gymnasium apparatus and exercise tables to small step boxes, barbells and other weights, and various kinds of strength and flexibility building equipment. Some of this equipment is stationary and some portable, and much of it is limited in use to one or a few specialized exercises. There are currently no devices on the market which allow a user to simultaneously perform cardiovascular and strength exercises.

One place in particular where floor space is particularly limited is in the cabs of tractor trailers. Such locations are typically about twenty square feet and must be useable space for other purposes such as providing a sleeping area, refrigerator, storage etc. In such locations, there is simply no space to designate for a work-out only exercise area.

Another disadvantage of current work out machines is that they do not permit a user to simultaneously perform cardiovascular and strength exercises.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention is directed to a novel exercise device which allows an individual to work-out using extendable bands. In some embodiments, exercise devices according to the present invention may occupy a minimum of floor area and room volume. The devices may be constructed to various dimensions and configurations to fit into a multitude of locations. In some embodiments a user can simultaneously perform a strength workout and a cardiovascular work out. In various embodiments a user can work out using one or more extendable bands while walking, jogging, or running on a treadmill, peddling on a stationary bicycle, or stepping on a step-machine or elliptical machine.

According to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the device comprises a first front vertical member, a second front vertical member, a first front horizontal member, a second front horizontal member, a first rear vertical member, a second rear vertical member, a first rear horizontal member, a second rear horizontal member, a first spacer, a second spacer, a third spacer, and a fourth spacer wherein at least one elastic band extendably connected to the frame at one end and said at least one elastic band having a handle at a second end.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIG. 1 depicts a perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 2 illustrates a perspective view of a frame portion of the exemplary embodiment of FIG. 1;

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view of the exemplary embodiment of FIGS. 1-2;

FIG. 4 illustrates a side view of an alternate exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 5 illustrates a front view of another exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 6 illustrates a front view of the exemplary embodiment of the of FIG. 5;

FIG. 7 illustrates a perspective view of the exemplary embodiment of FIGS. 5-6 in which a treadmill is in a useable condition;

FIG. 8 illustrates an exemplary hinge arrangement for the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 5-7;

FIG. 9 illustrates a front view of an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 10 illustrates a front view of an exemplary embodiment of the present invention including a stationary bicycle;

FIG. 11 illustrates an exemplary embodiment of the present invention including a step-machine;

FIG. 12 illustrates an alternate embodiment of the present invention; and

FIG. 13 illustrates an alternate embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

To promote an understanding of the principles of the present invention, descriptions of specific embodiments of the invention follow and specific language is used to describe the specific embodiments. It will nevertheless be understood that no limitation of the scope of the invention is intended by the use of specific language. Alterations, further modifications, and such further applications of the principles of the present invention discussed are contemplated as would normally occur to one ordinarily skilled in the art to which the invention pertains.

The present invention is directed to exercise devices that may have one or more extendable bands which extend from a frame in order to provide resistance so that an individual or user may pull on the bands for exercise. The devices of the present invention may be utilized in numerous configurations and may be installed in an infinite number of locations due to its variable configuration and its ability to be installed into existing cabinetry. One exemplary device of the present invention is shown in FIGS. 1-3.

FIG. 1 depicts a perspective view of an exemplary embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 2 illustrates a perspective view of a frame portion of the exemplary embodiment of FIG. 1. FIG. 3 illustrates side view of the exemplary embodiment of FIGS. 1-2. FIG. 4 illustrates a side view of an alternate exemplary embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 5 illustrates a front view of another exemplary embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 6 illustrates a front view of the exemplary embodiment of FIG. 5. FIG. 7 illustrates a partial perspective view of the exemplary embodiment of FIGS. 5-6 in which a treadmill is in a useable condition. FIG. 8 illustrates an exemplary hinge arrangement for the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 5-7. FIG. 9 illustrates a front view of an exemplary embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 10 illustrates a front view of another exemplary embodiment of the present invention including a stationary bicycle. FIG. 11 illustrates a front view of another exemplary embodiment of the present invention including a step-machine. FIG. 12 illustrates an alternate embodiment of the present invention. FIG. 13 illustrates an alternate embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 1 illustrates an exemplary embodiment exercise device 10 having a generally parallelepiped shaped frame 12 with a cavity 14 therein (cavity 14 which may extend partly or entirely through frame 12). In this embodiment, frame 12 has a generally rectangular shape bounded by first front vertical member 20, second front vertical member 22, first front horizontal member 24, second front horizontal member 26, first rear vertical member 30, second rear vertical member 32, first rear horizontal member 34, second rear horizontal member 36, and spacers 40, 42, 44, 46.

Four extendable bands 50, 60, 70, 80 are attached to frame 12 at band first ends 52, 62, 72, 82, respectively. As described in more detail below, band second ends 54, 64, 74, 84 may be terminated at one end in handles 82, 84, 86, 88.

Frame 12 may be of unitary construction or of multiple components and may be comprised of various materials including, but not limited to, plastic, metal, aluminum, steel, ceramic, and wood. In the embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, frame 12 is comprised of multiple members or components such that the various components are welded to various other members. Various means may be utilized to secure the various components together such as, but not limited to, screws, gluing, bonding, bolting, welding, snap fit, zippers, hooks and loops (such as available under the trade name Velcro®), snaps, etc.

FIG. 2 illustrates an exemplary frame 12 portion of exercise device 10. Illustrated is a relationship wherein front vertical member 20 is connected to front horizontal member 24 and spacer 40 at a first end and connected to front horizontal member 26 and spacer 44 at a second end; front vertical member 22 is connected to front horizontal member 24 and spacer 42 at a first end and connected to front horizontal member 26 and spacer 46 at a second end; rear vertical member 30 is connected to rear horizontal member 36 and spacer 40 at a first end and connected to rear horizontal member 34 and spacer 44 at a second end; and rear vertical member 32 is connected to rear horizontal member 36 and spacer 42 at a first end and connected to rear horizontal member 34 and spacer 46 at a second end.

Also illustrated are a plurality of holes H1-H20. Holes H1, H2 in front vertical member 20 may be utilized to allow an extendable band 50, 60, respectively, therethrough. Holes H3, H4 in front vertical member 22 may be utilized to allow an extendable band 70, 80, respectively, therethrough. Holes H5, H6, in vertical member 30 and holes H7, H8 in vertical member 32 may be utilized secure pulleys 78 to frame 12 (as illustrated in FIG. 3). Holes H9, H10, in rear vertical member 30, and holes H11, H12 in vertical member 32 may be utilized to allow bolts, screws, or other means to anchor frame 12 to a wall or other surface. Holes H13, H14, in spacer 40, and holes H15, H16 in spacer 42 may be utilized to permit anchor bolts to secure frame 12 to a surface, i.e., flooring, counter top, pick-up bed, etc. . . . Holes H17, H18, in spacer 44, and holes H19, H20 in spacer 46 may be utilized to allow bolts, screws, or other means to anchor a top, i.e., counter top, cabinet top, etc., to frame 12 or to allow 12 to be anchored to a horizontal surface including, but not limited to, a ceiling or the underside of a counter.

FIG. 3 illustrates a side view of the exemplary embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 1-2 showing a user utilizing exercise device 10. User 31 is illustrated pulling on handles 82, 88 such that extendable bands 50, 70 are in a stretched or extended condition. Though illustrated with user 31 facing exercise device 10, user 31 may also be facing away from exercise device 10 and may be standing, sitting, laying or in any other position. Further, extendable bands 50, 60, 70, 80 may be utilized by a user's hands, feet or any other body part. Handles 82, 84, 86, 88 may be of any configuration and may include one or more grips 90, 92, 94, 96. If handles are configured as illustrated, a user may grasp the exterior perimeter of the respective handle, or insert one or more fingers through the respective hole in the handle. As discussed herein, exercise device 10 may be located in various positions such as on a floor, elevated on a wall or suspended from a ceiling. Depending on the installation, exercise device 10 may be of varied configurations and extendable bands 50, 60, 70, 80 may be oriented to provide desired functionality and usability.

In the illustrated embodiment, extendable band 50 may be removably attached to frame 12's front vertical member 20 by way of hook 75 at an end of extendable band 50. Hook 75 may be attached to ring 73 which is in turn attached to, or integral with, vertical member 20. Extendable bands 60, 70, 80 may be similarly connected to their various front vertical members. (Note that although the extendable bands are illustrated as being connected to the front vertical members, they may be attached to any member of frame 12. In some instances one or more pulleys may be utilized.) Though illustrated as using hooks and rings, various other means may be utilized to connect extendable bands 50, 60, 70, 80 to their respective frame member including, but not limited to, utilizing hooks on the ends of the bands which can be looped around holes in the members, using tie straps, and tying the extendable bands about their respective front vertical members.

FIG. 4 illustrates a side view of exercise device 10 further including a plurality of pretensioners 100, 102, 104, 106 which may be used to pre-tension extendable bands 50, 60, 70, 80. Such pretensioners may be constructed of various means and methods including, but not limited to, clamps, springs, and discs. FIG. 4 also illustrates supplemental bands 51, 61, 71, 81 which may be affixed to rings 49 to allow a user to add additional tension.

FIG. 5 illustrates another embodiment of exercise device 10 in which frame 12 may be contained within cabinet cavity 164 inside cabinet 132. In the illustrated embodiment, cabinet 132 comprises a cabinet front panel 140, cabinet top 142, cabinet bottom 144, cabinet sides 146, 148, cabinet back 150, cabinet hinge(s) 160, 162, and cabinet handle/knob 168.

In this embodiment, a second cabinet may house one or more pieces of exercise equipment including, but not limited to, a treadmill, stationary bicycle (see FIG. 10), step machine (see FIG. 11), elliptical machine, and weight bench as well as shelving or drawers. In the illustrated embodiment, second cabinet 205 may comprise cabinet front panel 240, cabinet top 242, cabinet bottom 244, cabinet sides 246, 248, cabinet back 250, cabinet hinge(s) 260, 262, and cabinet handle/knob 168. Cabinet 205 may also include one or more cabinet cavities 264 on its interior for storage or other purposes.

FIG. 6 illustrates the embodiment of FIG. 5 in which cabinet front panel 240 has been partially opened to show cabinet cavity 264 which, in this embodiment, houses treadmill 200. In this embodiment, treadmill 200 may be pivotally positioned in cabinet cavity 264 by use of two sets of hinges 270, 272 (though more or less hinges may be used, even zero. In this embodiment, treadmill 200 is mounted on plate 210 (see FIG. 8). The power and control center (not shown) for treadmill 200 (or other equipment) may be mounted in or on exercise device 10.

FIG. 7 illustrates a partial perspective view of the embodiment of FIGS. 5-6. In this embodiment, treadmill 200 is mounted to plate 245 such that when plate 245 is pivoted about hinge 270, treadmill 200 also pivots. Plate 245 may be mounted to, or unitary with, cabinet bottom 244 (or to a floor or other surface if there is no cabinet or cabinet floor). Also illustrated in this embodiment are additional plates 247, 249 wherein treadmill 200 may be bolted or otherwise attached to plates 247, 249. In order to place treadmill 200 back into the cabinet, a user may simply pivot treadmill 200/plate 210 about hinge 270 until plate 247 or a side of the treadmill comes to rest against plate 274. The user may then grasp a side or other part of treadmill 200 or one of plates 210, 274 and then to pivot them about hinge 272 as illustrated in FIG. 6. Note that as treadmills come in various sizes, shapes and configurations, they may or not have handles such as handles 280, 282. In order to minimize volume, it may be desirable to choose a treadmill that has retractable or foldable handles. When in the usable condition illustrated, treadmill 200 (or other workout equipment such as a stationary bicycle, step-master, elliptical machine, weight bench, etc.) may be positioned in front of cabinet 140 such that a user can do both a strength work-out via the extendable bands and cardiovascular work-out simultaneously.

FIG. 8 illustrates a partial exploded top view of a hinge arrangement for the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 5-7. In this arrangement, treadmill 200 (not shown) may be mounted to mounting plate 210 by way of mounting bolts 212, 214, 216, 218 which may be received by corresponding holes 211 in mounting plate 210.

Hinge 272 may be comprised of several extended portions 289 of plate 245 wherein portions 289 are shaped to be able to receive a pin 291 therein. In the illustrated embodiment, extended portions 293 of plate 274 may interlock with extended portions 289 such that when pin 291 is inserted, hinge 272 is formed (note that plate 245 may be attached to cabinet bottom 244 or even unitary therewith). Similarly, extended portions 295 of plate 274 may be interlaced with extended portions 297 of plate 210 such that pin 291 may be inserted into the extended portions 295, 297 to form hinge 270. Note that various types of hinges or other means may be utilized including, but not limited to, barrel hinges, and rings.

One potential advantage of the embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 5-8 is that the width of cabinet 205 is much slimmer than if a single hinge (or no hinge) was used as the height of a treadmill is often significantly less than it's width, thus by orienting the treadmill as illustrated, a smaller width cabinet may be used. This is particularly advantageous if a user wants to install such a cabinet into an existing location, such as in a kitchen next to a refrigerator. Similar advantages can be obtained for various other exercise equipment including, but not limited to, weight benches, stationary bicycles, and step-machines.

FIG. 9 illustrates another exemplary exercise device 10 in which a plurality of shelves 301 are located within cavity 14 of frame 12. This embodiment illustrates a television 303 located within frame 12. In this embodiment, exercise device 10 may be mounted onto a wall or other surface at a desired height.

FIG. 10 illustrates an exemplary embodiment in which a stationary bicycle 300 is positioned in cavity 364 of exercise device 10. Stationary bicycle 300 may be mounted on a mounting plate 310 by way of mounting bolts 312, 314, 316, 318 and may be pivoted into a useable condition by pivoting bicycle 300 about hinges 370, 372 as described above with respect to treadmill 200 of FIGS. 5-8.

FIG. 11 illustrates an exemplary embodiment in which a step-machine 400 is positioned in cavity 464 of exercise device 10. Step-machine 400 may be pivoted into a useable condition by pivoting step-machine 400 about hinges 470, 472 as described above with respect to treadmill 200 of FIGS. 5-8.

FIG. 12 illustrates another embodiment of exercise device 10 having a first portion 510 and a second portion 520. In this embodiment, extendable bands 550, 570 are extendably attached to frame 512 and extendable bands 560, 580 are extendably attached to frame 513. Also illustrated are handles 582, 584, 586, 588. Frames 512, 513 may be mounted onto any suitable surface including, but not limited to, counters, dressers, armoires, bookshelves, desks, ceilings, and floors and may be oriented horizontally, vertically, or in any angle in between. One or frame 512, 513 may be used depending on the desired use and installation location.

FIG. 13 illustrates an embodiment in which a first member 520 is slidably connected to a second member 530 such as by ball bearings or other means. A third member 550 is rotatable relative to second member 530 such as by ball bearings 540 or other means. A fourth member 570 is pivotably connected to third member 550 by way of hinge 560 or other means. By using a sliding, pivoting and hinged means, a user is able to (a) slide out a piece of equipment, such as treadmill 200 as illustrated, (b) pivot the piece of equipment to a desired orientation, and then to (c) lower the piece of equipment so that it may be used. One potential advantage of such a mechanism is that it may allow a user to point the piece of equipment in varying directions such as toward a television, window, or other area.

The various members may be of any suitable configuration and orientation. In some embodiments it may be desirable to affix first member 520 to a floor or to a frame 12 as illustrated in various other figures.

Such exercise devices may be positioned or mounted in relatively small areas including, but not limited to, cabs of trucks, hotel rooms, sport utility vehicles, recreational vehicles, trailers, apartments, homes, boats, modular homes, hospitals, doctor's offices, physical therapist offices, mobile fitness units (trailers), and assisted living facilities. In one embodiment, a first exercise device is approximately thirty (30) inches wide, thirty inches deep, and thirty-six (36) inches tall.

The various components and members of the present invention may be comprised wholly or in part of any suitable materials including, but not limited to, steel, aluminum, ceramic, wood, alloys, plastic, rubber, carbon fiber, fiberglass, and stainless steel.

While the specification has been described in detail with respect to specific embodiments thereof, it will be appreciated that those skilled in the art, upon attaining an understanding of the foregoing, may readily conceive of alterations to, variations of, and equivalents to these embodiments. Also note that the housing and other components may be of any suitable shape depending on the desired application for the device. Accordingly, the scope of the present invention should be assessed as that of the appended claims and any equivalents thereto.





 
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